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Spring Injury and Illness Milestones

From mobility breakthroughs to marriage to annual fundraiser successes, we hope these six stories from Help Hope Live catastrophic injury and illness clients will ignite your hope.


Our Van is Here!

“We got our used van!! Thank you so much…we could not have done it without Help Hope Live. We are so thankful!”

Don’t miss the awesome Facebook Live video that shows David Talkington and his wife, Sharon, showing off the used van they were able to purchase through fundraising. David is living with a rare metabolic bone disease that constantly threatens his health and mobility.

The van will provide David with “increased freedom of travel and mobility” to attend medical appointments and give back to his community through church volunteering and outreach to fellow hypophosphatasia patients.


Amanda Perla was among the Help Hope Live clients living with paralysis who spoke out against Dr. Phil’s claim that it’s impossible to be both a lover and caregiver to someone with a spinal cord injury. Every day for the past eight years, Amanda and Matt have defied that claim…and they just tied the knot.

We’re glad to support Amanda’s mobility goals while she and her mother help others to do the same through NextStep Orlando.

Christine Got Wheels!

“Friday, I purchased a new 2018 Chrysler Pacifica Touring L Plus completely modified with hand controls and 6-way transfer from MobilityWorks of Ft. Lauderdale and it is absolutely amazing!!!!!

THANK YOU for helping me to reach my goal with your donations at my fundraiser events and my #WheelsForChristine campaign in honor of Christine Kent through Help Hope Live to get a new, fully-functioning, fully accessible ramp van!

I have already given another wheelchair user friend a ride since I picked it up, and it was a great feeling to help someone else in need. Thanks for helping me so that I may continue to help others, too! I feel so blessed and I’m grateful to those of you who cared to make a difference in my life! God bless you!”

Annual Fundraisers Are Going Strong!

For many of our catastrophic injury clients, annual fundraisers provide a way to engage motivated local volunteers, businesses, and supporters to help fund critical injury-related expenses. It’s always exciting for our team to witness fundraisers like these take off and deliver vital financial and emotional support year after year. A few examples:

In April, our client April Winter-Bruno pulled off her ninth annual golf tournament to help with quadriplegia-related expenses. The fundraiser is a massive source of assistance: her out-of-pocket medical costs top $100,000 per year.

This month, the fifth annual #EileenStrong golf tournament in honor of injured mom Eileen Reedy. In 2018, the tournament raised $70,000 for Help Hope Live to help with Eileen’s daily care and recovery, including home caregiving and physical therapy¬† expenses.

The latest Love. Live. Give. fundraiser in honor of our client Libby Judge raised a whopping $115,000 toward the $200,000 annual cost of care for the mom and grandmom living with paralysis.


Exceeding Expectations in PT

Jane Koza‘s medical team predicted that it would take her six months to learn how to self-transfer in physical therapy following the loss of her legs to transverse myelitis complications. Forced to live in a nursing home well before her senior years, Jane knew independence and mobility were closely tied to her quality of life. With help from the physical therapists at Kessler Rehabilitation Center, Jane learned how to self-transfer in just two months.

Creativity Comes to Life

“I feel so blessed to discover new ways of channeling my creativity! Painting is great for clearing my mind and working on my fine motor hand function.”

It seems like every season, we have a new good-news update from Lauren Shevchek, who just passed her sixth anniversary of the diving accident that left her with paralysis. In May, Lauren shared photos and insights on her latest pursuit: a 12-hour sketching and painting session that resulted in a gorgeous final piece.

Bonus! A Journey of (Three) Thousand Miles...

Janne Kouri founded the nonprofit NextStep Fitness in 2008 to help people living with paralysis like him gain access exercise-based rehabilitation for improved mobility and quality of life. This year, he took another epic step to encourage and inspire spinal cord injury families.

Janne cycled 3,100 miles from California to Washington, D.C., raising $350,000 along the way.

Talking to SCI advocate and 2018 Live Award winner Will Reeve, Janne hinted at big plans for 2021. We’ll stay tuned!

Did you catch our May #MobilityMatters series highlight mobility stories and professionals? If not, don’t miss these…

COVID-19 Update: Click here for important information about our service, campaigns, and donations.